TelePsychiatry leverages telemedicine to provide mental health coverage for hospital emergency departments as well as consultation-liaison psychiatry inpatient consultations anywhere in the hospital. It is the diagnosis and treatment of mental health patients by a remote clinician using telecommunications technology like videoconferencing. It makes it possible for a psychiatrist and patient to be in separate rooms, cities, states, or even countries and still be connected face-to-face.
When a patient with mental health or substance abuse issue arrives at the ED, they are triaged similar to any other illness. Once any medical issues are established or eliminated, the patient is typically isolated and monitored closely. Hospitals request a telePsychiatry consult, and the patient is seen by the remote psychiatrist. Treatment options are discussed with the patient, patient’s family, and onsite staff.